Friday, September 21, 2018

The “Whack-A-Mole” Syndrome

I’m not a fan of arcade games, but I did enjoy a game or two of “Whack-A-Mole” — many years ago. Have you played it? You have a padded mallet and stand behind a board with a dozen holes or more, and when a mole puppet raises its head, you “whack” it. They pop up randomly, and faster, as you get better at the game. I have to admit it, I was not known as the “Fastest Whack in the West.”

It struck me this morning (no pun intended) that a lot of people play “Whack-A-Mole” with their family. We notice every wrong in them when it pops up and we grab our mallet, often unpadded, and start whacking away. Some of us have gotten really good at it — if you consider that a good thing!

The trouble is, after a while of whacking, the “moles” give up and stop popping up. You may hear it like this:” What’s the use of trying? I can never please them, no matter what I do.”

Let’s try something new. Put away the mallet! Be observant of the good they do and “whack” them with praise. Encouragement is a great blessing. How do we know this? Because Jesus doesn’t play “Whack-A-Mole” with us! If he whacked us for every wrong we commit, we’d be beaten to despair. The Psalmist said it well, “If You, LORD, kept a record of sins, O Lord, who could stand? But there is forgiveness with You so that we can, with reverence, serve You” [130.3-4].

There is forgiveness with You…” Aren’t you glad for that!

But exhort one another daily, while it is called “Today,” lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin. For we have become partakers of Christ if we hold the beginning of our confidence steadfast to the end, while it is said: “Today, if you will hear His voice, do not harden your hearts as in the rebellion. Hebrews 3.13-15

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